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For the location by the same name, see Café Disco (location).

"Café Disco" is the twenty-seventh episode of the fifth season of The Office, and the 99th episode overall. It was written by Warren Lieberstein and Halsted Sullivan and directed by Randall Einhorn. It first aired on May 7, 2009 and was viewed by 7.71 million people.

Cold open

Erin exclaims that she has just won an art contest. Pam and Jim exchange disbelieving looks while Dwight watches them deviously. Dwight pays Erin, who responds in an audible whisper that she still doesn't know why Dwight wanted her to do that. Dwight bursts out in savage laughter in his talking head saying he "got" Pam. Bemused, Pam tells him that wasn't cool, as Dwight continues to laugh uncontrollably.


The documentary crew finds Michael dancing in the empty room that he still has under his lease for the Michael Scott Paper Company. When Michael returns to the Dunder Mifflin office to entice them to join him, everyone declines the offer. While Michael "relieves stress" in the room formerly the Michael Scott Paper Company, Erin tries to deliver him a memo. Michael forbids work and Erin begins to dance with him. They later return to the office, both with espresso cups, and Michael announces he has figured out what's going on. He believes Charles made them become "too focused on work". In an attempt to get the office more relaxed, he explains about the converted room downstairs. Erin finally helps Michael put a label to the room: the Café Disco. Kevin joins Michael downstairs for the all-you-can-drink espresso, but Angela needs him to return to work. Michael sympathizes with the founders of Phillip Morris inasmuch as his attempt to give people a means of relaxation is rejected.

Michael's next attempt to increase attendance to the Café Disco is to hold the boom box speaker up to the ceiling vent, piping "Everybody Dance Now" into the Dunder Mifflin office. Phyllis, won over by the music, leaves to get Bob. When she enters Vance Refrigeration, Bob's new secretary, Jessica (who bears physical resemblance to Phyllis), informs Phyllis her husband doesn't want to be disturbed. Suspicious, Phyllis leaves a message with Jessica and proceeds to the Café Disco. Michael is surprised Phyllis would show up, but quickly overcomes this and they begin dancing. While dancing, Phyllis throws out her back. Michael texts Dwight for assistance and the two wheel her back up to the office. Dwight takes Phyllis into the conference room and tends to her as he would a horse. He cuts open the back of her shirt to massage her, hand-feeds her vegetables, and says "whoa, girl," when she tries to get up. Phyllis confesses to him her fear that Bob may cheat on her with his secretary but the two laugh when she realizes how ridiculous the idea sounds.

Though Michael tries to still promote interest in the Café Disco everyone wishes Michael would stop his shenanigans. Michael throws his keys at Erin, tells her to "shut it down", and storms into his office to eat his lunch alone. Kelly helps Erin dismantle the Café Disco but when Kelly turns off the light, Erin decides to turn on the boom box. They begin dancing, and Leo from the warehouse notices them. In no time, the room is packed with nearly everyone from the office and even Erin's friend Ashley. Upstairs, Michael hears the music from the revived Café Disco and follows it. Andy begins a dance off with Kelly. Creed donates the mini disco ball he'd been using as a rearview mirror. Angela walks straight under the limbo pole and tries to get Michael to sign some papers. Michael refuses to sign more than one paper per song, exasperating Angela. Michael further forbids her to clean up to which Angela exclaims "am I not allowed to have some fun?"

Jim and Pam decide they are going to get married today in Youngstown, Ohio, because there is no three-day waiting period. Jim picks some flowers from the planters outside the office and presents them to Pam. As they leave to elope, they stop by the Café Disco. Nobody seems to notice Pam's pink wedding dress as she and Jim join the party. Dwight and Phyllis return (her blouse mended with staples) and they begin to dance as well, Phyllis with Bob. While everyone dances to the song "YMCA", Kevin makes out with Lynn and Jim and Pam realize they both want a real wedding. In the end, although she refuses to dance, Angela taps her foot to the beat. In the women's bathroom, Kelly prepares to give Andy the ear piercing she claims he's been wanting, but Andy screams when she has only touched his ear with the ice.

Deleted scenes

The following deleted scenes appear on the Season 5 DVD:

  • In a talking head interview, Dwight angrily suggests that if you're going to Ohio, you should say "hi" to his cousin, and kick him in the groin "because he's a cheat and a ball hog." Also to his cousin's wife, "because she's a heartbreaking tart. And a ball hog."
  • Lynn gets on the elevator and meets Kevin. Kevin asks if she had bacon for breakfast which she denies. Lynn tries to make small talk, and Kevin says he would invite her to go to get espresso, "but I remember that you just want to be friends." Lynn says "we can...", but Kevin interrupts to ask again if she had bacon, which she again denies. Kevin awkwardly leaves.
  • In a talking head interview, Lynn admits that she did have bacon. "I just didn't think it was anyone's business."
  • In a talking head interview, Kevin says "I love the smell of bacon on a woman."
  • Over the phone, Kevin leaves a message for Lynn inviting her to get espresso at the café disco. Kevin tries to convince Angela to let him go, and Oscar says, "Just go down, Kevin," so he does.
  • Michael addresses the office and tells a rambling story about how his grandfather stopped being fun once he got a job, while he dumps out a can of coffee and throws out the cream and sugar. In a talking head interview, Stanley says, "How did I end up back in crazy town?"
  • Ryan walks past the café disco and declines Michael's offer to go in. In a talking head interview, he explains that he shouldn't be putting himself in that kind of environment any more.
  • Meredith sits down between Leo and Gino and puts her hands on the insides of their thighs, clearly enjoying it. They try not to react.
  • In a talking head interview, Andy says that the dance competition is too close to call after two rounds. He was hoping to use the hair whip move, "but she totally beat me to it."
  • While receving a back massage from Dwight, Phyllis says that she played softball and made all-county in her junior and senior years. Dwight brags that he "once hit three home runs against Little Flower Catholic." In a talking head interview, Dwight says that he did play softball, thanks to the case of "Schrute v. Lackawanna County Board of Education" that went to the state supreme court. He shows a scrapbook of himself on a girl's softball team. "I hit the ball right over the protest banners."


  • The Café Disco is in the former Michael Scott Paper Company office. In previous episodes, the office was able to hear sounds from the Dunder Mifflin men's bathroom, whereas in this episode, Michael and Creed can hear the office's music from the bathroom.
  • Several songs are featured in the episode, including "Boy Hangover", written by Lester Lewis especially for The Office.
  • When Dwight discovers somebody has plans to visit a courthouse in Ohio, he says one of the reasons to do so is "to obtain a learner's permit at age 14½ instead of 15". The state of Ohio requires that you be 15½ to get a permit and the state of Pennsylvania requires that you be 16. Furthermore, you must be a resident of Ohio to obtain a permit, and Pennsylvania does not honor learner's permits from other states.
  • When Dwight asks to see Erin's birth certificate, she reaches into her purse looking for it. This is likely because she is adopted, so she would be carrying it for proof if somebody arrived who claimed to be her birth parents.
  • Youngstown, Ohio is a 5½-hour drive from Scranton. It does not have a superior court, but there is a probate court which issues marriage licenses. The probate court closes at 4pm, but Jim and Pam were still in Scranton after lunchtime, so they would never have made it in time anyway.
  • Jim says that Ohio is the closest state without a marriage waiting period. This is not true. The state of Connecticut also does not have a waiting period for marriage licenses. Danbury is only 2½ hours away, and the marriage license office is open until 5pm.
  • Michael asks Erin if she would like an espresso and then adds "Gotta keep yourself dehydrated". This is because coffee is a diuretic.
  • One of the songs played in the Café Disco is "Cat People (Putting Out Fire)" by David Bowie. This song was featured in the 2009 film Inglourious Basterds, which was released around the time that Café Disco aired. B.J. Novak had a role in Inglourious Basterds resulting in his characters absence from the show until "Dream Team".
  • During the dance-off, Kelly does parts of the famous chair-routine from Flashdance.
  • Alexis Teague makes an uncredited appearance as Erin's friend Ashley. Teague was Kirsten Dunst's stunt double in the movie Spider-Man 3.
  • This episode was choreographed by Mary Ann Kellogg.[1]

Amusing details

  • The brief solidarity among Michael, Pam, and Ryan from "Casual Friday" has already evaporated.
  • It is revealed that Erin has been asking how everyone is doing whenever she interacts with them just as a waitress would. In a deleted scene in "Secretary's Day", she reveals that one of her previous jobs was as a restaurant hostess.
  • A limbo bar is placed at the entrance to the disco room. Everyone has to limbo under it except Angela, who merely walks under it.
  • Michael and Erin both return to the office from the Café Disco with cups of espresso.
  • Michael tells Erin to come to Café Disco anytime because the lock on the door is broken, however later in the episode when Michael tells Erin to shut it down, he tosses her a key chain, implying that she would lock the door.
  • When Michael and Angela try to get Kevin to stay and leave the Café respectively they do so in the same manner one would try to entice a pet dog, Michael even clenches his fist to pretend there is a cookie in his hand to entice Kevin.
  • Dwight asks Phyllis who tipped her over as though she is a cow. Dwight even tries to calm Phyllis in the conference room in the same manner one would calm a farm animal.
  • Michael tells Dwight that he doesn't need a history lesson when Dwight lists the common injuries. Dwight then tells him it isn't history but physics.
  • Dwight pretends to have deduced that Phyllis grinds her teeth by assessing her back, but then reveals that he knows this purely because of how close he sits to Phyllis.
  • When Creed walks out of the bathroom he is eating chicken.
  • Michael mentions the "all you can eat espresso." He obviously means all you can drink.
  • Phyllis reveals she is worried that Bob is going to cheat on her with his new secretary, who has a similar appearance to her.
  • Creed gives Michael a mini disco ball for Café Disco, and suggests that he uses it as a rearview mirror in his car, saying, "I'll just have no idea who's driving behind me now."
  • Andy asks Kelly if she is sure the ear she is piercing is not the "gay ear." She is attempting to pierce his right ear, which according to The New York Times started in the 1960s as a way for gay men to discreetly indicate their sexual preference. There is no such thing as a "gay ear" today.

Connection to other episodes

  • Phyllis is wearing the same skirt she did in "Crime Aid".
  • Dwight and Phyllis further their friendship that arguably began in "Crime Aid".
  • Michael says he still has the lease on the Michael Scott Paper Company office, however in "Dream Team", it is heavily implied that they do not pay a lease on the office as it is a closet and Billy is just doing Michael a favor.
  • The woman (Lynn) who Kevin makes out with in the Café Disco is the woman he met in the Valentine's Day episode "Blood Drive".


  • Angela Kinsey starts to break when Michael holds out his closed fist to Kevin pretending to hold a cookie.
  • When a dejected Michael eats his lunch in his office, the boom box is back on his shelf, even though he brought it downstairs in an earlier scene.

Behind the scenes

  • The dancing scenes were filmed without music. The music was added during editing.[2]:47:54

Cultural references


Main cast

Supporting cast

Recurring cast

Guest cast